A Capehart Scatchard Blog

School Board Did Not Violate ADA in Non-Renewing Teacher but May Have Violated His FMLA Rights

By on February 19, 2016 in ADA, FMLA with 1 Comment

Terrence Preddie was employed from 2010-2011 as a fifth-grade teacher at Columbus Signature-Codrea Elementary School in Indiana.  Dr. Diane Clancy assessed Preddie’s job performance in the first school term as effective in some areas and needing improvement in others.  One specific area where improvement was needed was in leaving organized lesson plans for substitute teachers. […]

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Township Violated ADA in Requiring Employee to Submit to a Fitness Exam Without Showing a Job-Related Reason for Exam

By on February 10, 2016 in ADA with 0 Comments

Paul Williams worked for ten years for the Township of Lakewood in the Department of Public Works (DPW).  On March 28, 2013, the Township Manager received an anonymous letter concerning Mr. Williams.  The writer said he was a co-worker and that he and other co-workers were in fear of their safety because Williams allegedly exhibited […]

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Assault Committed by Ex-Husband in Employer Owned Parking Lot Found Not Compensable

By on February 4, 2016 in Compensability with 2 Comments

Jennie Rosario worked for the State of New Jersey as a caseworker for the Division of Youth and Family Services.  She left the Division’s Maplewood office intending to get into a State-owned vehicle on May 23, 2006 to perform her duties as a field case-worker.  As she was leaving the office, her ex-husband assaulted her […]

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Can an Employer Fire an Injured Employee on Light Duty and Then Stop Paying Temporary Disability Benefits?

By on January 27, 2016 in Compensability with 2 Comments

In an extension of the principle established in Cunningham v. Atlantic States Cast Iron Pipe Co., 386 N.J. Super. 423 (App. Div. 2006), the Appellate Division ruled on January 22, 2016 that an employee who was fired while on light duty was not entitled to temporary disability benefits because the firing was not related to […]

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Federal Court Rejects Summary Judgment for Employer in Disability Discrimination Claim Where Employer Failed to Engage in Interactive Dialogue Until Employee Could Return to Work

By on January 19, 2016 in ADA with 0 Comments

Penelope Bertolotti worked for Autozone, Inc. as a Divisional Human Resources Generalist.  She was hired in early 2012 and sought a leave of absence due to personal illness on October 15, 2012.  She returned to work on October 29, 2012 only to request another leave of absence commencing on November 5, 2012.  At first her […]

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New Jersey Governor Vetoes Two Major Workers’ Compensation Bills Opposed by Employers

By on January 14, 2016 in Uncategorized with 1 Comment

On Monday, January 11, 2016, Governor Chris Christie issued vetoes of two bills long supported by the petitioners’ bar in New Jersey and strongly opposed by employers and carriers. S-374/A-3403 involved legislation sponsored by attorneys for injured workers to increase their legal fees.  This particular legislation was aimed at voluntary offers that employers have been […]

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Plaintiff and Her Husband Could Not Sue Plaintiff’s Employer for Assault and Battery and Sexual Harassment

By on January 5, 2016 in Compensability with 1 Comment

Rose Fonrose Louis worked at a Burger King restaurant in the Monmouth Mall in Eatontown, N.J.  On August 29, 2008, Louis was working in a walk-in freezer when an assistant manager, Hany Salib, followed her into the freezer and proceeded to touch her breast and buttocks through her clothes, kissing her neck, and attempting to […]

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Court Finds Popping Incident in Low Back While Walking Not Work Related

By on December 29, 2015 in Compensability with 0 Comments

Colleen Fitzgerald filed a claim petition alleging that on April 26, 2010 she was walking down an alley as a zone merchandising supervisor for Walmart, when she suddenly felt a “pop” in her lower back.  She admitted that she was simply walking at the time the incident occurred.  However, prior to this popping incident she […]

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Court Finds that Company Did Not Discriminate Against Injured Worker Returning from Comp Injury When It Fired Him for Lack of Available Work

By on December 23, 2015 in ADA with 0 Comments

Michael Sluga worked for Metamora Telephone Company as an Outside Plant Supervisor.  On July 27, 2011 he slipped on a trailer while at work and fell two feet to the ground, tearing his rotator cuff.  He tried to work with the injury but eventually in December he asked for a six month leave of absence […]

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Court Finds Assault by Coemployee at Work Not Compensable but Rooted in a Pyramid Investment Scheme Involving the Two Employees

By on December 16, 2015 in Compensability with 0 Comments

Most assaults by an employee on another employee on work premises are compensable for the victim of the assault, but the facts in Joseph v. Monmouth County, A-4144-13T3 (App. Div. December 14, 2015) were most unusual. Lesley Joseph was a nursing supervisor at a Monmouth County owned nursing home.  On June 9, 2011, Mr. Joseph […]

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Appellate Division Affirms Denial of Workers’ Comp Benefits to Owner of Business Based on His Misrepresentations Regarding Nature of His Company’s Business and Its Legal Status

By on December 9, 2015 in Compensability with 1 Comment

Samuel Roman formed Treeminator Tree Services, Inc. in 2007.  By 2012 he and his girlfriend, Sandra Flores, were both employees along with two others.  In 2009 Roman sought workers’ compensation coverage with NJM for Treeminator Tree Service, LLC, a company with no employees and engaged in landscaping work but not tree trimming.  He obtained the […]

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Employee Who Came to Work Solely to Pick up His Paycheck Was Not Covered for Comp When He Fell on Premises

By on November 30, 2015 in Compensability with 1 Comment

Robert Miller worked as customer service and bookkeeping associate at Saker Shoprite from 4:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.  On January 29, 2010, Miller came to work to pick up his paycheck at 10:00 a.m.  The store allowed employees to do direct deposit or to pick up their paychecks in person.  While he went in to […]

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Appellate Division Allows Petitioner with Total Disability Award to Reopen a Prior Claim for Partial Total Disability

By on November 23, 2015 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

Employers often find New Jersey to be a very frustrating state for workers’ compensation because it is very difficult to close a file for good, unless the parties have grounds for a Section 20 disposition and the proposed Section 20 meets with the approval of the Judge of Compensation.  Now those employers will have added […]

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Barnabas Health System Wins Coveted “Teddy” Award at National Workers’ Compensation Convention in Las Vegas

By on November 16, 2015 in Uncategorized with 0 Comments

The signature workers’ compensation event in the United States takes place each year at the National Workers’ Compensation and Disability Conference and Exposition in Las Vegas, Nevada.  The highlight of the conference is the presentation of the “Teddy” award to a select few companies, chosen from hundreds of applicants, for outstanding achievement in workers’ compensation. […]

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Understanding Idiopathic Claims and How to Prove the Defense

By on November 10, 2015 in Key Defenses with 1 Comment

The term “idiopathic defense” is widely misunderstood.  Practitioners need to appreciate when the defense applies and who has the burden of proving an idiopathic defense.  In New Jersey, and in most states, the burden is on the employer to prove an idiopathic defense.  The word “idiopathic” comes from the Greek: “idios” meaning one’s own, and […]

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